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April 27, 2012

Inpatient Hospice Care Unit Opens at Rush University Medical Center

Rush Collaborates With Horizon Hospice to Provide End-of-Life-Care in Comforting Environment

(CHICAGO) – The first inpatient hospice unit at a major medical center in Chicago will open at Rush University Medical Center by early June, providing patients with comfort, dignity and compassionate care during their final days. The 13-bed unit, which will accommodate infants and children as well as adults, will be operated by Horizon Hospice and Palliative Care.

A dedication ceremony will be held on Monday, April 30 at 9:30 at the facility, named the Ada F. Addington Inpatient Hospice Unit in honor of Horizon Hospice’s founder. Rush CEO Dr. Larry Goodman and leadership from Rush and Horizon Hospice will be joined by Chicago area leaders to help dedicate the facility.

Hospice care is end-of-life medical, psychological and spiritual care for adults and children. The goal of the care is to help people who are dying have peace, comfort and dignity. Hospice caregivers provide palliative care, which focuses on controlling pain and other symptoms so a patient can remain as alert and comfortable as possible. Hospice programs also provide services to support a patient's family. Although hospice care in the U.S. primarily is provided in a patient’s home, some patients have medical needs that cannot be provided at home and therefore are provided in an inpatient facility.

“We are very pleased to be working with Horizon Hospice to provide this critically important service to patients at the end of their lives,” says Dr. Anthony Perry, director of the Johnston R. Bowman Health Center at Rush, which houses the hospice unit. “This relationship will offer terminally ill patients and their loved ones peace of mind knowing that they can stay in a comforting environment where they’ll receive the care they need to alleviate their suffering.”

The Bowman Center is located at 710 S. Paulina Avenue.  The mission of the Bowman Center is to provide specialized medical and rehabilitative care for Rush patients.

“This dedicated inpatient unit will provide not only optimal medical care for the patient, with hospice-trained physicians and nurses, but also a dedicated interdisciplinary team of social workers, chaplains and volunteers to make sure that the patient and family are receiving the best psychosocial and spiritual care possible,” said Dr. Joanna Martin, Horizon Hospice medical director.

The unit features private patient rooms with fold-out beds for family members, a kitchenette and television. The unit’s central gathering area includes a fireplace, aquarium and children’s play space. In addition to medical care, the hospice will comfort patients with such services as music, massage and pet therapies.

Horizon will operate the unit, which will accept patients from any hospital, residential facility or private home. Approximately 50 percent of the patients are expected to come from Rush University Medical Center, which will act as a partner in providing some aspects of care. Dr. Sean O’Mahoney, director of the Section of Pain and Palliative Care at Rush will be the inpatient hospice unit medical director.

Rush and Horizon Hospice share a commitment to education of healthcare providers; therefore, the new hospice inpatient unit also will be a training location for Rush University students studying hospice and palliative care.   


About Rush University Medical Center
Rush is a not-for-profit academic medical center comprising Rush University Medical Center, Rush University, Rush Oak Park Hospital and Rush Health. Rush’s mission is to provide the best possible care for its patients. Educating tomorrow’s health care professional, researching new and more advanced treatment options, transforming its facilities and investing in new technologies—all are undertaken with the drive to improve patient care now, and for the future.

About Horizon Hospice
Founded in 1978, Horizon Hospice and Palliative Care, Chicago's first hospice, is a not-for-profit, community-based organization that provides hospice and palliative care service throughout the Chicago area. Horizon’s mission is to provide comfort for the dying, to preserve dignity at the end of life for all in need of services, and to educate the community. Last year, Horizon teams provided care to 1,046 patients and provided training to 155 medical students, fellows and residents, nursing, social work and bereavement students. Horizon has been accredited by the Joint Commission since 2000. For more information, please visit





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